Being pregnant after a preemie is one of the most mentally challenging things I’ve done. People often ask me what was the second factor on having another baby after Jaxson. My number 1 answer is: “Choosing the RIGHT DOCTOR!” And on February 11th, we were beyond grateful for the choice we made. I delivered a healthy baby girl via scheduled C-Section at 38 weeks which was our goal. I cried tears of joy on the operating room table as my OB held my baby girl up for me to see. it was such sweet relief! And to see how equally happy my Doctor was for us was the icing on the cake.
I think it’s important to have someone who will not only advise you from a medical stand point, but one who will also be personable. After all, you will be on a (long) 9 month journey so building a good rapport is crucial. The Doctor you choose should also take your previous history into consideration and come up with a plan that helps you carry to (full) term. Of course nothing is guaranteed, but I do feel with the proper plan of care your goals can be reached!
For me personally I really felt that I could trust what my OB suggested. Upon our initial meeting my husband and I prayed that God would lead us to the right OB. And we set up a consultation prior to getting pregnant with our baby girl. I suggest consulting before choosing your Doctor just to make sure it will be a good fit. My OB was attentive, she listened to my fears and concerns, always told me, “Don’t worry”, she’s a woman of faith and we came up with goals together. All those components allowed me to feel confident in the treatment plan she laid out for me.
Just to recap- I was on oral progestrone pills from 6-12 weeks; at 16 weeks I began Makena shots (weekly) until 36 weeks. I also saw my OB and her sonographer every 2 weeks to make sure my cervix wasn’t shortening or opening. While the treatment plan seemed cumbersome at times, I knew that it was in the best interest for me and my baby girl. There were many days that I was exhausted and sore for days post my weekly shots, but it beat the alternative which could’ve meant pre-term labor. And- I was blessed to only have to do shots and not get a cerclage or even be put on bed rest. That was a fear of mine especially having a toddler but it didn’t happen! And on the days that were hard physically and emotionally, my OB and her Staff encouraged me and cheered me on as we progressed. After experiencing 9 months of pregnancy with an awesome support staff, I felt the need to shout to the roof tops about how choosing the right Doctor can be so beneficial in your journey.
Here are a few tips and questions you can ask your OB when trying to decide to expand your family (after experiencing pre term labor/birth):
Am I healthy enough to get pregnant again?
What is the plan to help me carry full term?
What happens if I show signs of pre-term labor again?
How often will I be seen by you or get sonograms?
Will I need to take any special medications or shots?
Do I need a cerclage? And if I get one what are the chances of me giving birth prematurely?
Will I need to automatically be on bed rest? What would be the signs that require me to be put on bed rest?
Are you confident I can carry longer than last time?
At any point will I need steroid shots for the baby’s lungs?
Based on my previous history, what type of delivery do I need to have? Vaginal? C-Section?
At what gestation would we deliver the baby as long as everything is going well?
I hope our journey has encouraged you to choose faith over your fears and know that amazing things can happen when you do!